Having a vivid imagination is one of the cornerstones to any great science fiction writing, and I can tell you that Scott’s is wildly vivid. From his urban fantasy series Dragon Badge pits a street cop against evil sorcerers and vicious hell hounds, to his Kin Roland series follows a troubled ex-spacemarine in his battle against…well everyone, Scott’s books never fail to entertain.
Josh Hayes: Scott thanks for taking the time out of your day to sit and visit with me.
Scott Moon: Of course, thank you for the opportunity.
I’d have to say the unusual. I’ve always liked stories and I like to have adventures. Mostly I like to read and write stuff that not everyone gets to do.
Did anything specific move you to create Kin and his world?
SM: The story of Kin Roland was originally a screenplay. After watching the Vin Diesel movie Pitch Black I sat down to try to write, a faced paced military adventure with traces of Aliens and Starship Troopers. It took me about four weeks to write and that was when I learned that there are warehouses filled with optioned screenplays. Sure if a producer optioned my screenplay I would, get some money, but chances are it would just sit in a warehouse and collect dust and are never made and I wouldn’t be able to do anything else with it. I wanted people to read it.
Son of Orlan is your fourth novel in 2 years, how do you keep up that pace? With a full time job and kids, how do you ever find the time to right?
I try to write first thing in the morning and it’s typically the last thing I do I night. But mostly I’m always prepared to write. I used Google Drive and Google Docs to write my manuscripts, that way it’s always there whenever I have to time. I’m always prepared to write. I’ve even learned to write with kids crawling all over me.
Are there any differences in how you wrote Enemy of Man and Son of Orlan?
Originally, Enemy of Man was titled Wormbright (the screenplay) and that story I wrote using thing “seat of the pants” method. Enemy has been rewritten several times and took me about 40 days to write the 1st draft and about 4 months to edit. With Son of Orlan I actually sat done and did a lot of organizing before I started writing. The first draft still took about 3 months to write, followed by another 4 months of editing.
I’ve learned a lot about my writing through the editing process. My editor, Samantha LaFantasie, does a wonderful job ripping apart my manuscripts.
I would have to say my books about cops are the easiest to write, but sometimes I feel like what I write in those books is too harsh for my readers. I’ll read a scene and in my head, I know that it’s exactly how it would be in real life, but wonder if it would make my readers uncomfortable to read it.
Do you find it difficult to switch between one styles of fiction to another?
Not really. Everything I write usually has some paranormal elements mixed in with some fantasy and a dash of Stephen King.
What led you to Indie publishing over traditional?
My first novel Dragon Badge was originally titled, Michael Prim and the Chaos Broker, but I thought the title made it seem too much like a YA (Young Adult) book. So I changed it during the re-write and began the submission process of traditional publishing. At first, I was encouraged, it made it through the “first stage” of the process but after that I didn't hear anything back for almost 7 years. No kidding. I’d forgotten about it and then one day I get a rejection letter out of nowhere. That blew me away. Not the fact that the manuscript was rejected, but that it took 7 years.
Also, most publishers don’t allow simultaneous submissions and after waiting 7 years for a rejection, I knew that traditional publishing wasn’t going to work for me. That was when someone sent me an article on the Kindle Direct Publishing program and that, as they say, was that. I did my research, formatted my books, and got a cover and put it up on Amazon.
Son of Orlan is your fourth novel. Are there things you know now about Indie publishing that you wish you would’ve known when you published Dragon Badge. Is there anything you would have done differently?
When it comes to writing a series, yes. I would have completed at least the first draft of the first three books before publishing the first one. That way it’s easier to spot continuity problems and have a more complete story. Also, frequency in publishing helps your ranks and brings in more readers; publishing 30 to 90 days apart seems to be the best way to go.
I have all kinds of advice; I’m trying to think of anything worth a shit. The main thing is to you need to write the book quickly and don’t show it to anyone or talk about it. I feel once you’ve show it around or told people what it’s about; you won’t feel the urgency to finish it.
The phrase “Get written then get it right” from Writing in Overdrive is one of my favorite writing quotes. Give yourself permission to write like shit and then make it better.
The book 2,000 to 10,000 – How to Write Faster, Write Better and Write More of What You Love by Rachel Aaron, talks about the “writing triangle” each side has a name: Knowledge, Time, Enthusiasm. The most important of which is Knowledge. She says, “If you want to write faster, the first step is to know what you’re writing before you write it.” (loc. 117 of 1338, Kindle ver. 2013 revised ed.) The other two sides are relatively easy: track your time and if you’re not excited about a scene work it out until you are or just out right toss it.
What’s next for Moon?
I’m working on the third book in the Kin Roland series and I’m finishing up the final book in the Dragon Badge Trilogy. I also have some ideas for a standalone book in the Dragon Badge series.
I'd like to thank Scott for talking time out of his busy schedule to talk with me. His newest book Son Of Orlan is coming soon to Amazon.